In this form letter, King invites Montgomery pastors to the afternoon ordination service on 30 May (King misdated it as 29 May) of a group of deacons at Dexter. Among those ordained were H. Councill Trenholm, president of Alabama State College, and Dr. W. D. Pettus, a physician. At the regular morning service King’s sermon was “Loving Your Enemies.”
Dear Reverend [blank]:
You and two of your deacons are invited to participate in the Ordination Service of a group of deacons at the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church. Your congregation is also invited to attend the service. The service will be held at the church on the Fifth Sunday, May 29, at 3:30 p.m. We would like for you along with your deacons to come about a half an hour before the service begins (ca. 3:00 p.m.), in order to form an ordination council.
Will you kindly notify me by return mail whether or not you find it possible to accept this invitation. You may address your letter to the church. I assure you that your cooperation at this time will be highly appreciated. I am,
DEXTER AVENUE BAPTIST CHURCH
R. D. Nesbitt, Clerk
[signed] M. L. King, Jr. (n)
M. L. King, Jr., Pastor
MLKP, MBU, Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers, 1954-1968, Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center, Boston University, Boston, Mass.